NEW YORK – The latest reality show will make fun of reality shows -- and the women who flock to get on shows like The Bachelor in hopes of getting rich.
Fox has secretly been producing Joe Millionaire, a seven-episode series in which 20 women will compete to marry a man they believe to be a millionaire -- but is really a construction worker who makes $19,000 a year.
The women were flown to France where they competed to win the heart of a man they are told just inherited $50 million.
Viewers will know from the start Joe is, in fact, a blue-collar guy, but in the show (which debuts Jan. 6 at 9 p.m.), he was transformed from a Schlitz swigger to a swaggering playboy.
"In a way, we're ripping the mask off the people [who sign up for shows like The Bachelor]," Fox reality programming chief Mike Darnell told Daily Variety. "We find out whether they're really doing this for love."
Joe will lie to the women about how he inherited the money, but will tell the truth about every other aspect of his life.
"All of his back-story is true, except for the money part," Darnell said.
Just like in Bachelor, Joe will narrow down the dating pool each week.
Dates will include horseback rides through the French countryside (near what the women believe is his chateau) and gourmet meals at the Eiffel Tower.
Instead of roses, like on The Bachelor, Joe will give each of the losing women pieces of jewelry of escalating value.
In the final episode, the faux millionaire will chose the one woman with whom he wants to have a relationship. If the woman agrees to continue the relationship, Joe will be forced to tell the truth -- about his empty bank account.
Fox execs have declined to say if a marriage proposal is involved.